Redragon K552-RGB Keyboard Review

Tested using Methodology v1.0
Reviewed Jan 30, 2020 at 07:49 am
Redragon K552-RGB Picture
7.5
Gaming
3.8
Mobile/Tablet
7.0
Office
6.9
Programming
4.4
Entertainment / HTPC
Connectivity Wired
Size
TenKeyLess (80%)
Mechanical
Yes

The Redragon K552-RGB is a good mechanical gaming keyboard with clicky tactile switches and a TenKeyLess design that's simple and functional. Its impressive build quality and superb RGB lighting with individually-backlit keys competes with keyboards at twice its price. Unfortunately, the keyboard is pretty barebones when it comes to extra features, and the clicky Outema Blue switches are loud and may not be the best choice for quiet offices. However, given its budget price, it's still a good option for those looking for a basic mechanical keyboard with admirable performance.

Our Verdict

7.5 Gaming

The Redragon K552 is a good gaming keyboard. The clicky Outemu Blue switches are satisfying and responsive, and they have a short pre-travel distance. Unfortunately, the latency is only mediocre, and without software support, gamers won't be able to set macros or reprogram keys. The full RGB backlighting is good for gaming in dark rooms, but it doesn't offer the same customization as a keyboard with companion software.

Pros
  • Build quality feels great.
  • Low pre-travel distance.
  • Full RGB lighting with Individially-backlit keys.
Cons
  • No customization software.
  • Mediocre latency.
3.8 Mobile/Tablet

The Redragon K552 can't be used with mobile devices.

7.0 Office

The Redragon K552 is a decent keyboard for office use. The keyboard feels light to type on, and it's not fatiguing, but noise can be an issue if you work in a quiet office. Unfortunately, its ergonomics are only okay as it has a high profile, and it doesn't include a wrist rest. Thankfully, the keyboard has good compatibility with most desktop operating systems, though some keys may not work on macOS.

Pros
  • Build quality feels great.
  • Compatible with both Windows and macOS.
Cons
  • Ergonomics are only okay.
  • Clicky switches may be too loud for some office environments.
6.9 Programming

The Redragon K552 is a reasonable keyboard for programming. It has clicky Outemu Blue switches that offer a light typing experience, an impressive overall build quality, and excellent full RGB backlighting. Unfortunately, there isn't any companion software, so lighting is customized directly on the board, and the keys aren't programmable, which may be a dealbreaker for some.

Pros
  • Build quality feels great.
  • Fully compatible with Windows and Linux.
Cons
  • No customization software.
  • Ergonomics are only okay.
4.4 Entertainment / HTPC

The Redragon K552 is not suitable for entertainment or home theater PC use. You can't use it wirelessly, so you'll need to be seated within cable range, and it doesn't have a trackpad, so you'll likely need a mouse as well to navigate menus. On the bright side, it has media hotkeys and superb full RGB backlighting, but it has no companion software for customization.

Pros
  • Full RGB lighting with Individially-backlit keys.
Cons
  • No trackpad.
  • Wired-only
  • No customization software.
  • 7.5 Gaming
  • 3.8 Mobile/Tablet
  • 7.0 Office
  • 6.9 Programming
  • 4.4 Entertainment / HTPC
  1. Updated Feb 04, 2021: Converted to Test Bench 1.0.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Dimensions
Height
1.4" (3.6 cm)
Width 14.0" (35.5 cm)
Depth
4.8" (12.3 cm)
Depth With Wrist Rest
N/A
Weight
1.76 lbs (0.800 kg)

The Redragon K552 is a TenKeyLess keyboard and has a fairly small footprint.

8.0
Design
Build Quality
Keycap Material ABS

The Redragon K552 has a great build quality. It's a mix of hard plastic and metal, and the keyboard feels heavy and robust, with no signs of flex. The keycaps are doubleshot ABS, and the keys are stable, but the spacebar has a slight wobble to it.

6.5
Design
Ergonomics
Board Design
Straight
Minimum Incline
4 °
Medium Incline
N/A
Maximum Incline
8 °
Wrist Rest No

The Redragon K552 has adequate ergonomics. It has one incline setting and the keyboard has a fairly tall profile, which may require a wrist rest for optimal comfort; however, it doesn't come with one.

9.6
Design
Backlighting
Backlighting Yes
Color
RGB
Individually Backlit Keys
Yes
Color Mixing
Poor
Effects
Yes
Programmable
Yes

The Redragon K552 has full RGB backlighting, unlike the near-identical AUKEY KM-G9 Mechanical Keyboard. However, since there's no official software support at this time, customization is done on the keyboard itself. You can cycle through 18 lighting effects and set individual key colors. Unfortunately, the color mixing is poor, which means there's a fair amount of color bleed between keys. You can see this in our white shot photo, where full white backlighting appears pinkish or purple.

Design
Cable & Connector
Detachable
No
Length 6.2 ft (1.9 m)
Connector (Keyboard side)
Not Detachable

The cable is rubberized and feels strong, but it's not detachable.

0
Design
Wireless Versatility
Bluetooth
No
Bluetooth Multi-Device Pairing
No
Proprietary Receiver
No
Battery Type
No Batteries

The Redragon K552 is a wired-only keyboard.

Design
Extra Features
Media Keys
Hot Keys
Macro Programmable Keys
No
Trackpad / Trackball No
Wheel No
USB Passthrough
No
Numpad No
Windows Key Lock
Yes
Lock Indicator Caps & Scroll Lock

The Redragon K552 keyboard has very few features available. There are hotkeys for media control and a Windows key lock hotkey to prevent accidentally minimizing your game.

Design
In The Box

  • Redragon K552-RGB keyboard
  • Keycap remover
  • User guide
  • Sticker

Typing Experience
Typing Experience
Keystrokes
Key Switches
Outemu Blue
Feel
Clicky
Operating Force
61 gf
Actuation Force
45 gf
Pre-Travel
2.0 mm
Total Travel
3.8 mm

The Redragon K552 uses clicky Outemu Blue switches that are similar to Cherry MX Blues. The operating force required is fairly low, but there's still a tactile bump to overcome, providing feedback and an audible click when a keypress is registered. If you're looking for a TKL gaming keyboard that's available with tactile or linear switches, check out the ROCCAT Vulcan TKL.

7.0
Typing Experience
Typing Quality

Typing quality is decent. While the click of the tactile feedback feels satisfying, it feels a little out of place, as the click doesn't quite line up with the actuation. It isn't unpleasant, but enthusiasts of Cherry MX Blues may find it a bit odd. That said, the typing experience remains light and shouldn't be fatiguing over time. The keycaps feel nice to the touch and are very stable, though the spacebar has a slight wobble.

Typing Experience
Typing Noise
Noise
Loud

Typing noise on this keyboard is fairly loud and may not be suitable for use in a noise-sensitive environment.

6.3
Typing Experience
Latency
Latency Wired
26.5 ms
Latency Receiver
N/A
Latency Bluetooth
N/A

The Redragon K552's latency is only mediocre, and it's very high for a gaming keyboard. It may not be suitable for competitive, reaction-based games, but it shouldn't pose problems for more casual gaming. If you want a TKL board with a much lower latency, have a look at the Fnatic miniSTREAK.

Software and Operating System
0
Software and Operating System
Software & Programming
Software Name No Software
Account Required
No Software
Profiles
No Profile
Onboard Memory
No
Cloud Sync
No
Macro Programming
No
Ease Of Use
No Software
Software Windows Compatible
No
Software macOS Compatible
No

There's no customization software. The backlight can be customized using hotkeys. There are 18 lighting effects to choose from, and you can also customize each key individually, though the keyboard can only hold one custom profile.

7.6
Software and Operating System
Keyboard Compatibility
Windows Full
macOS Partial
Linux Full
Android No
iOS No
iPadOS No

The Redragon K552 has good compatibility with most desktop operating systems. All keys and features work on Windows and Linux, but Scroll Lock, Pause, and some of the hotkeys don't work on macOS.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

We tested the Redragon K552-RGB, but there are 8 variants of this keyboard with various color and backlight options. With the exception of backlight customization, we expect our results are applicable to the other variants as well.

Model Color Backlight
Redragon K552-RGB Black RGB
Redragon K552 Black Red
Redragon K552-R Black RGB Rainbow
Redragon K552-N Black None
Redragon K552W-RGB White RGB
Redragon K552W White Red
Redragon K552W-R White RGB Rainbow
Redragon K552W-N White None

Compared To Other Keyboards

The Redragon K552 is an entry-level mechanical gaming keyboard with a great build quality, especially at its price point.
Unfortunately, it lacks certain features common with more premium mechanical keyboards, such as companion software that allows you to program keys, set macros, and more precisely adjust RGB lighting settings. You may find it to be a good budget choice if you're new to mechanical gaming keyboards or prefer a gaming keyboard with a more limited set of features. For other options, check out our recommendations for the best gaming keyboards, the best mechanical keyboards, and the best RGB keyboards.

HyperX Alloy FPS Pro

The Redragon K552-RGB and the HyperX Alloy FPS Pro are good TenKeyLess gaming keyboards with great build qualities. The Redragon has full RGB lighting, 18 lighting effects, and you can set colors for individual keys. It comes with clicky Outemu Blue switches and doesn't have any other switch types available. On the other hand, the HyperX has significantly better latency, a better-feeling typing quality, and although it has backlighting, it's only in red and only has six lighting effects. Our unit has linear Cherry MX Red switches, but it’s also available with clicky Cherry MX Blue switches.

SteelSeries Apex 3

The SteelSeries Apex 3 and the Redragon K552-RGB are very different keyboards. The SteelSeries is a full-size membrane keyboard, while the Redragon is a TKL mechanical keyboard. The SteelSeries is more comfortable to type on because it has a lower profile and comes with a wrist rest. The typing experience is also very different. The SteelSeries' rubber dome switches feel a bit mushy, and the tactile feedback doesn't feel as distinct as on the Redragon's Outemu Blue switches. The Outemu switches have a shorter pre-travel distance but require more force to actuate. While the SteelSeries has lower latency, it's still relatively high for a wired keyboard and might not be ideal for serious gamers. You can't program any macros on the Redragon, and customizing the RGB backlight can be somewhat complicated because there's no software.

AUKEY KM-G9 Mechanical Keyboard

The Redragon K552-RGB is almost identical to the AUKEY KM-G9 Mechanical Keyboard, although it's slightly better as it features full RGB lighting, while the AUKEY doesn't have any backlight. Other than that, these two keyboards are pretty much the same.

HyperX Alloy Core RGB

The Redragon K552-RGB is a much better keyboard than the HyperX Alloy Core RGB. The Redragon has mechanical switches that provide a better typing experience, though the clicky switches may be bothersome for some. The Redragon has a significantly better build quality, and its RGB backlighting has more customization options; however, it may not be the best choice if you like having a NumPad, as the Redragon is a tenkeyless keyboard.

Vortex Race 3

The Redragon K552-RGB and the Vortex Race 3 are both TenKeyLess mechanical keyboards with significant differences. The Redragon has clicky Outemu Blue switches and full RGB backlighting, which the variant of the Vortex we tested lacks, although there's a variant with RGB lighting available. The Vortex has a non-typical TKL layout that's similar to the size of a 60% keyboard but with several more keys. It also has significantly lower latency, more solid-feeling build quality, and better typing quality. Our version has Cherry MX Brown switches, but it’s also available with a range of other Cherry MX switches, including Red, Blue, Black, Silent Red, Silver Speed, and Clear, as well as Silent Black, specifically available for the RGB variant.

ROCCAT Vulcan TKL

The ROCCAT Vulcan TKL and Redragon K552-RGB are TenKeyLess gaming keyboards, but the ROCCAT is a better keyboard overall. The ROCCAT has a detachable USB-C cable and companion software that offers plenty of customization. You can also set macros using the companion software, though you can only set them to alphanumeric keys on the left side of the board. It's available with either ROCCAT Titan tactile or linear switches. On the other hand, the Redragon has significantly higher latency, no companion software, none of its keys are macro-programmable, and it's only available with clicky Outemu Blue switches.

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